Two-week-old David was taken from his family's residence on 13th Street in Newport News, Virginia under false pretenses on December 11, 1980.
His abductor called herself "Marie Kelly" and told David's mother, Vanessa that the Department of Social Services was sponsoring a function for children at Riverside Regional Medical Center.
The woman convinced Vanessa to let her take David and his two-year-old brother, Frederick to the party. Later that afternoon, Frederick was found wandering alone at a shopping center near Old Mallory Road in Hampton, Virginia with a piece of paper in his pocket with his name and address on it, and the police returned him to his mother. There was no indication of David's whereabouts and he has never been seen again. The Department of Social Services didn't have a social worker of Kelly's description working for them.
Several days after David's abduction, authorities found a diaper bag and a leather folder near a parkway in Yorktown, Virginia. They believe that the items belonged to the abductor.
The abductor is described as an African-American female with a medium complexion and a heavy build. She's never been identified. There was no social worker in the area named Marie Kelly and there was no Christmas party at the hospital. The authorities believe that whoever took David may have gotten his name and address from the local newspaper, which provided a listing of recent births three days before he was taken.
In a stunning coincidence, two of David's nephews were abducted in June of 2011, over 30 years after his own kidnapping. The boys were the sons of his younger brother, Dante, and were 5 and 6 years old at the time. Their mother, Yovanda Bennafield, had taken them to work with her when a stranger, Sommer Pannell, asked for a ride to North Carolina. She agreed and told Pannell to take her car and take the children to the park and watch them until she finished her shift. Instead, Sommer and the children disappeared. All three were found unharmed in North Carolina hours later and Sommer was charged with abduction.
Vanessa died of natural causes in 1997 at the age of 35. Frederick now lives in North Carolina. As an adult, he could vaguely recall the abduction and stated that there was a man driving the abduction car, and neither the man nor Marie Kelly would look at the children. He remembers the couple dropping him off in Hampton.
Investigators still have the diaper bag, which contained David's booties and blanket, a sweater and jeans & they hope to be able to test the items for DNA.
David has black hair, brown eyes, a mole on his right ear and birthmarks under his left arm, on his back and on his buttocks.